8 Replies Latest reply: Apr 15, 2010 4:06 PM by Pier Rodelon
Steve Finlay Level 1 Level 1
I found a new app for testing the download speed on my iPad. I previously used the Speedtest.net App, which only goes up to 10mbps on the display meter. I was getting only 6-9 mbps on the iPad and 22mbps on my macbook pro using Speedtest.net.

I just installed the FCC Mobile Broadband App from the App store(free) and low and behold the iPad scores 15 mbps in multiple tests, and Macbook pro 21mbps.
The point is that Speedtest.net app being an unreliable App misled me.

Try it before you return your iPad.

Macbook Pro unibody, iPad 64G, Mac OS X (10.6.3)
  • Craig Brady Level 4 Level 4
    Results are subject to the total variability of the Internet, not to mention you will only use a fraction of the bandwidth most of the time. Run you tests over several days and several time slots.
  • schnauzer777 Level 1 Level 1
    Interesting. FWIW, the speedtest.net app and the FCC app are both made by Ookla.

    On my wired PC with a cable connection, I get 25MB, which is what Comcast is selling me. On a PC, of course, I can test the speed in a browser with Flash and Java tests. I have the most confidence in Stanford University's Web100 based Network Diagnostic Tool. My point being, I know what browsing with a fast connection looks like, feels like.

    On my iPad, using the FCC app, I get 22MB. Yowsa! Government-certified speed. (Incidentally, I get 15MB on my iPad using the speedtest.net app, and I get 13MB on my iPhone using the FCC app.) So the FCC says I'm getting the same speed (close enough) on my wifi iPad that I get on a wired desktop. Now, I clear the cache in Firefox on my PC and download the LATimes.com. Blink of an eye. I clear the cache on my iPad and do the same thing. One Mississippi, two Mississipi . . . . Oops, the download gets hung up somewhere. Ultimately, it takes 10-12 seconds to download the page.

    This is my experience not just with the LA Times, but with every web page. I'd be interested to know how the experience of other iPad users compares. I say the speed of browsing the internet on an iPad doesn't compare to the speed of browsing the internet on a computer. Not even close. I don't care what those speed tests say. If they're accurate, it's because they're measuring something that doesn't relate to downloading web pages in the iPad browser. Also, if they're accurate, that means the browsing experience I'm getting is as good as it gets.

    I'm not anywhere near knowledgeable enough to explain this, but I would make two points: I think there are a lot of people like me who do all their newspaper reading on the internet, and who might have hoped that the iPad would enable them to get out of their offices and do internet reading at the same speed. That is not the case. The speed of iPad downloads is much closer to the speed of iPhone downloads than to the speed of downloads on a computer. (ii) Getting fast connections via wifi is a problem that has been solved for years by every computer maker, or router gizmo maker, whatever. Why can't the iPad technology offer the same result/experience that any laptop does?

    I believe the dslreports iPhone speed test, which works within Safari, gives a better measure of download speed.
  • Pier Rodelon Level 1 Level 1
    You guys are scaring me. I get about 2-4 Mbps download and about the same upload on the FCC Mobile Broadband test. If you're getting 15 I'm in trouble.

    Is everybody getting numbers like that?
  • Glorfindeal Level 6 Level 6
    They are getting those numbers because they have faster internet connections. What service are you using and what speed did you pay for?

  • Lee M Level 1 Level 1
    "I say the speed of browsing the internet on an iPad doesn't compare to the speed of browsing the internet on a computer. Not even close. I don't care what those speed tests say."

    The speed tests test the speed of the download. When comparing 'browsing' experience, you also need to take into account how long a device takes to render a page on-screen. For exampele - a high-end PC with 4GB RAM and a $400 graphics card will most likely draw a webpage, especially one with lots of formatting & graphics, much faster than a portable device. Different browsers, and even the same browser on different platforms, will also make a difference. FireFox is known to be pretty fast, so comparing FireFox on a desktop PC to Safari on an iPad is apples and oranges, and your 'browsing' experience will be different, even if your d/l speeds are identical.
  • Pier Rodelon Level 1 Level 1
    I have Comcast cable and it's supposed to be . . . well, I don't know. Fast, it's supposed to be fast. Relatively fast. I'll call and ask.
  • red555 Level 4 Level 4
    I have the lowest cost comcast cable access and I am getting 10-14 Meg upload and 3-6 Meg download intermittently. It drops during peak times.
  • Pier Rodelon Level 1 Level 1
    When you say "Meg" are you meaning megabits or megabytes? Or am I confusing things here? And are the folks up above in this thread also talking about megabits when they write MB? Another thread say 6 Mbps is about the limit of most wireless. Need clarification, pls.